Ireland: Introduction

Ireland is an island nation located in Western Europe northwest of United Kingdom. It has a strategic location on major air and sea routes between North America and northern Europe. The government system is a republic, parliamentary democracy. The chief of state is the President and the head of government is Taoiseach (Prime Minister). Ireland has a mixed economic system in which the economy includes a variety of private freedom, combined with centralized economic planning and government regulation. Ireland is a member of the European Union (EU).